American Renaissance

Bush’s Push for Illegals Creating Anxious Nation

Some in therapy threatening to leave U.S., want to send president bill for counseling

Joe Kovacs, © 2004, Jan. 22

While President Bush has enjoyed strong support for his handling of the war on terror, his recent push to provide legal status to millions of illegal aliens is sparking a sudden surge in negative emotions among many Americans.

Radio talk-show hosts Michael Savage, Rush Limbaugh, and Joseph Farah have all been flooded with callers concerned about the new initiative for immigrant workers, some even raising the possibility of impeachment.

The proposal is also a new, frequent topic among those in counseling, with some calling it “the last straw” in their support for Mr. Bush as they deal with heightened fear and anxiety.

“They’re taking it as a personal slap in the face from the president,” says Sally St. John, a Las Vegas-based counselor and relationship and self-help personality for Fox television affiliate KVVU.

“They see it as a selfish, self-serving move on the president’s part and a personal betrayal, and it’s triggering all kinds of family-of-origin issues. My clients feel betrayed, angry and scared. It’s like having a father that you trusted turn on you, and you don’t know what he’s going to do next.”

St. John says her clients are independently bringing up the immigration proposal during sessions.

“One is having anxiety symptoms like knifing pains in the heart and sweaty palms. The other one, a guy in his mid-forties, is so anxious, he told his mother that he’s considering leaving the country. He wants to move to Australia because he’s afraid that we’re going to be invaded, that the borders are going to be non-existent, and that we’re going to have no safety in this country.

“[Another] is having nightmares that the president is in fact the Antichrist and that before you know it, we’re gonna be in a full-fledged New World Order. …

“One guy wants to send President Bush his bill for therapy because he feels that maybe this will wake him up. … These were very loyal Republicans, they would never have voted against him, and they’re feeling very betrayed.”

The Republican National Committee says much of the anxiety can likely be attributed to confusion about the policy.

“A lot of people think it’s amnesty,” RNC spokeswoman Christine Iverson told WorldNetDaily. “It is not amnesty.”

She says the RNC has received 20 calls on the issue this week, all of which were against the proposal.

Iverson believes once people thoroughly investigate the idea, they’ll feel more at ease, and support for the proposal will grow.

“I would invite them to find out as much as they can,” she said. “They’ll find it’s nothing to be anxious about. It will help national security and that may lessen that anxiety for them.”

Proponents say the measure beefs up national security by holding personal information on alien workers in the U.S., rather than having none at all.

During his State of the Union address this week, Bush told the nation what he was trying to accomplish:

I propose a new temporary worker program to match willing foreign workers with willing employers, when no Americans can be found to fill the job. This reform will be good for our economy - because employers will find needed workers in an honest and orderly system. A temporary worker program will help protect our homeland - allowing border patrol and law enforcement to focus on true threats to our national security. I oppose amnesty, because it would encourage further illegal immigration, and unfairly reward those who break our laws. My temporary worker program will preserve the citizenship path for those who respect the law, while bringing millions of hardworking men and women out from the shadows of American life.

When WND asked its readers what they thought about the president’s speech, the top response in yesterday’s daily poll found over 31 percent of respondents saying “I agree with most everything except his plan to legalize illegal aliens.” Over 19 percent felt Bush hit a home run with the address.

As WorldNetDaily reported Tuesday, a Washington Post-ABC News survey showed Bush’s support dropping dramatically, leaving him in a virtual dead heat against an unknown Democratic challenger in the November election.

While Bush continues to enjoy a huge advantage over Democrats on matters of national security, the new poll indicated most Americans think the Democrats would do a better job on domestic issues - the economy, prescription drugs for the elderly, health insurance, Medicare, the budget deficit, immigration, even taxes.

Despite opposition to the immigration changes, some are going public with their support.

Columnist Stuart Taylor Jr. of the non-partisan National Journal calls it a step in the right direction toward ending the immigration nightmare.

Taylor writes, “The only way to stop the flow would be to completely militarize the Mexican border, require all Americans to display on demand a biometrically encoded national identification card, launch regular dragnets through barrios and workplaces, and engage in other police-state measures abhorrent to most Americans. While most voters want to cut down on illegal immigration, most would not support such draconian and constitutionally troublesome policies.”

And St. John says while her counseling clients remain fearful about the plan, they still hope the president can somehow make things right with them.

“They want to see him redeem himself, but they’re afraid he’s not going to be able to,” she said. “What they’re afraid of is they’re seeing a true side to him that they haven’t seen before. …

“Maybe he’s got some kind of an explanation for this. It’s like kids who have been abused by their parents. They’re willing to forgive … for even the most horrific things if the parents are sincere, admit what they did was wrong and don’t do it again. I think the American public really needs to see this stop in order to relax and to build their trust back in him.”